July 17th, 2009
10:45 AM ET

Bo, President Obama’s Portuguese water dog, reflects on his White House tenure

[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i.l.cnn.net/cnn/2009/LIVING/wayoflife/04/17/wants.portuguese.water.dog/art.bo.family.cnn.jpg caption="Malia Obama practices walking Bo as her parents and sister, Sasha, wait their turn."]
Ben Greenman
For The New York Times

Before my arrival in the White House in April, I was not well known to the American people. Perhaps understandably, I was greeted with some suspicion. “Portuguese water dog” has a foreign sound to it.

My hair covers my eyes, which can create the impression that I am not trustworthy. From the first, I took it upon myself not only to illustrate my own belief in clear thinking and accountability, but to give the American people a sense of what their lives would be like during my time in the White House.

As I approach the milestone of my first 100 days in office, I want to reiterate some of my basic convictions.

Historically, my breed is used to herd fish in shallows or carry messages from ships to the nearby shore, and I have tried to show the American people that I will continue that tradition, both leading (the fish) and communicating (the messages).

I have succeeded more than I have failed, but there have been lapses. Remember when I bit that reporter’s microphone? I had a sudden urge to get that thing. I thought it was a fish. Even thinking about it now makes me jumpy. Another time the president almost tripped over my leash, and even though that wasn’t technically my fault, I take full responsibility.


Filed under: 360° Radar • First Dog Bo Obama
April 14th, 2009
10:28 AM ET

Some neighborly advice for the First Dog

Lola Lipson
Chicago Tribune

Congratulations, Bo. You have adopted an excellent family. You look like a real cutie, and I know Sasha and Malia are very lucky to have you.

I'm a Portuguese water dog and I want to pass along some motherly advice. In dog years, I'm roughly the same age as President Barack Obama, and from the same neighborhood too, Hyde Park. I hope you will come and visit. Perhaps we can swim together. It's our birthright as "Porties." We were bred to help fishermen with their nets and to deliver messages between boats. But I have to tell you that I swim in Lake Michigan all the time and Portuguese fishing boats are extremely rare.


April 13th, 2009
12:34 PM ET

Bo knows kibble

[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/images/04/12/art.bosolo0412.wh.jpg caption="Bo, a six-month old Portuguese water dog, was given to the first family by Sen. Ted Kennedy."]

Jack Gray
AC360° Producer/Writer

Well, by now you’ve heard the details:  the newest member of the First Family is a six-month old male Portuguese Water Dog whom the Obama girls have named Bo and Secret Service agents have codenamed “Gassy.”

I’m sure at any moment we’ll receive a statement from Dick Cheney’s dog calling Bo “a socialist whose policy on playing fetch is putting America’s national security at risk.”  And as soon as they hear the word “Portuguese” the president’s critics will be complaining about him outsourcing yet another job overseas.

Anyway, Bo came from a breeder in Texas to whom he was returned by his original family. The official word is that the family’s older dog didn’t like him.  Something about Bo’s penchant for loan sharking, black market cheek implants and halfway houses in Pompano Beach, Florida.  The tabloids are going to love this guy once he discovers the D.C. bar scene.

Bo, of course, succeeds Barney and Miss Beazley, the Bush family’s two Scottish Terriers who, frankly, did not set the bar for First Dogs particularly high.  Miss Beazley is now waiting tables at a Dallas strip club and Barney was last seen knocking over a Radio Shack.